Bird & Bird recruits for Madrid launch

Bird & Bird will open its third new office of 2005 today (12 September) in Madrid.

The technology firm’s new Spanish office, its thirteenth base, is headed by Javier Fernández-Samaniego, a former Linklaters managing associate and head of Linklaters’ IT and communications (ITC) team in Madrid, who joins as a partner.

Bird & Bird’s chief executive David Kerr said Fernández-Samaniego will be the only partner on day one, although he will have a team of around four lawyers. Kerr said he was confident there would be at least four partners within six months.

“We realised from past experience that we need to have a range of disciplines, including employment, corporate, commercial and IP, in place from day one,” said Kerr. “We anticipate there being significant further growth.”

Fernández-Samaniego has worked with several Bird & Bird lawyers in the past, including former Linklaters partner Graeme Maguire, who is now a partner at the technology outfit. The firms also share a number of clients and have worked together on projects.

Fernández-Samaniego said that ITC is a core part of Bird & Bird’s business, making this an obvious move for him, while the firm was attracted by the strength of the Spanish economy and the opportunities in a vibrant local technology and communications market.